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McGee earns Briarwood STAR; Patterson takes teacher honor

Briarwood Academy senior Amy McGee, a National Merit finalist, has added STAR Student for Briarwood Academy and Warren County to her academic accomplishments.


Briarwood STAR student Amy McGee and STAR teacher Beth Patterson pose for a picture.

Miss McGee, the daughter of Roy and Karen McGee of Lincolnton, selected Beth Patterson, high school and middle school math and science teacher, as her STAR Teacher.

She will compete on the district level as the Warren County STAR Student. The STAR (Student/Teacher Achievement Recognition) program for Briarwood Academy is sponsored locally by the Warrenton Kiwanis Club.

As a National Merit Scholarship finalist, McGee joins an elite group of students representing less than one percent of the high school students in the United States. More than 1.3 million juniors in over 21,000 U.S. high schools entered the 2004 National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. She was first named a semi-finalist and now a finalist based on her record of high academic performance, recommendations by school officials and SAT score, confirming her PSAT qualifying performance.

She will not learn until May if she has been awarded one of some 8,000 Merit Scholarship awards totaling $32 million. The National Merit program is a not-for-profit organization that is underwritten not by the government, but by private businesses and higher education institutions

Amy, a native and lifelong resident of Lincolnton, has attended Briarwood since kindergarten. She is a member of the National Honor Society and served last year's graduating class as a Junior Usher. She has been recognized for academic achievement by the University of Georgia, Presbyterian College, Wofford College, and Erskine College.

Amy has served as class president since the ninth grade.

She is an active student at Briarwood, participating in cheerleading, twirling and chorus.

A Captain of this year's football and basketball cheerleading squad, she has been selected as a UCA All Star cheerleader. She is also a member of the cheerleading competition squad, which placed first in the Heart of Georgia competition and second in the GISA state competition.

Amy, who began twirling in kindergarten, is a co-captain of this year's twirling squad.

She participated in the Briarwood Chorus from the ninth through the eleventh grades as a member of the cast of three musicals and one one-act play.

This year she is a member of the yearbook staff for Briarwood.

Amy will represent Briarwood in Extemporaneous Speaking in GISA Region 1AA literary competition this spring.

Amy, who attends Greenwood Baptist Church of Lincolnton, has one brother, Scott, who is a 2003 graduate of Briarwood.

Upon graduation from Briarwood, Amy plans to attend the University of Georgia.

"I thoroughly enjoyed being in Mrs. Patterson's classroom," Amy said of her STAR teacher. "Not only is she a great teacher, she was very understanding when it came to our participation in other activities, and she would work with us in scheduling to make it easier on us."

"I was floored when she chose me. That in and of itself is a great honor," Mrs. Patterson said of her selection as STAR teacher. "Amy is a delight in the classroom. She's always smiling, one of those students you enjoy teaching. She is a very conscientious student with an incredible work ethic. Also, to her credit, when she finishes her work, she is always willing to help other students.

Mrs. Patterson, a native of Millen, has been teaching middle school and high school science and math at Briarwood for the past seven years.

Mrs. Patterson is a graduate of Edmund Burke Academy. After attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton for two years, she transferred to Augusta State University where she earned a B.A. in Education. She earned her Masters in Education from Georgia Southern. Mrs. Patterson taught middle school math and science in the Burke County school system for four years before moving to Thomson seven years ago.

Mrs. Patterson's husband, Mark, is a Wildlife Technician for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. They have two children, Jacob, a sixth grader at Briarwood, and Shelby, a third grader at Briarwood. They are members of Pine Grove Baptist Church.

Web posted on Thursday, February 23, 2006

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